Jonathan Katzman and family- Self Drive

Jonathan Katzman

Saturday 15th June – Wednesday 26th June 2024

Number of Travellers: 4
Duration: 12 Days / 11 Nights


Picturesque coastal towns and villages, green pastoral fields, soaring cliffs, wild barren landscapes, the crash of the ocean, the laugh of a local. Ireland is romantic, authentic, a home away from home where both old and modern seem to cohabit seamlessly on a small island in the middle of the sea. Packed with history and tradition your days are spent exploring Ireland’s famous and off the beaten track sites of natural, cultural and ancient interest. A world renowned food scene means your evenings are spent dining in style and with the promise of a pub just around the corner, music and laughter are never far away. Your trip to Ireland will surprise and delight you but the people of Ireland will stay with you, long after your journey has taken you home.

Day by Day

Day 1 - Saturday 15th June - Galway City

Arriving into Dublin airport this morning, pick up your rental car and head to Galway, the capital of Ireland’s west. Known as the ‘town of the tribes’ the small centre of cobblestone streets and colourful store fronts is vibrant, fun and cosmopolitan. A great way to get to know a new city and it’s culture is a foodies walking tour.

With its cobbled paved streets, buskers and street performers, Galway is fast becoming the west coast’s most vibrant urban centre and a mecca for foodies. Today join a wonderful local culinary walking tour and enjoy Galway’s famous food culture as you explore the streets taking in some of the town’s best known and secret food haunts. Indulge in everything from Oysters to Cheese; Sushi to Crab and Doughnuts to Strawberry Tarts, Local Beers and more. Following your tour, you will have time to browse Galway’ perhaps picking up a memento to two before making your way out of the city and into the wilds of Connemara National Park.

This evening, check into the understated comfort and tradition at Ballynahinch Castle in Connemara. Set on a private 700 acre estate of woodlands, rivers and walks in the heart of Conenmara. This authentic and unpretentious Castle Hotel stands proudly overlooking its famous salmon fishery, with a backdrop of the beautiful 12 Bens Mountain range.

Overnight: Connemara | Ballynahinch Castle Hotel
Room Type: Superior & Classic

Day 2 - Sunday 16th June - Inishbofin Island

On Connemara’s western edge lies the island of Inishbofin. Little visited due to its remoteness, the island is a distillation of the best of Connemara. Here you will meet a local archaeologist whose wealth of knowledge will bring the island’s millennia of history to life as you walk. Inhabited as far back as 8000 BC, there’s no shortage of history, folklore and built heritage to explore with your guide before ferrying back to the mainland. There will be time later this afternoon to check out some more of Connemara National Park and we recommend not leaving without a tour of Kylemore Abbey and Victorian Walled Gardens. With a history spanning six centuries, Kylemore Abbey is the oldest Irish Benedictine abbey. The abbey has endured through wars, national conflict and migration and today is both a wonderful immersive visitor attraction and the community and home to a group of Benedictine nuns.

Why not stay around Clifden Village this evening for a local dinner and some traditional Irish music in the pubs before heading back to your hotel.

Overnight: Connemara | Ballynahinch Castle Hotel
Room Type: Superior and Classic
Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 3 - Monday 17th June - Chocolate and Sheepdogs

Leaving Connemara and Galway, today you will head south, into Clare, the home of The Cliffs of Moher and the Burren region, a rocky landscape that hosts an array of wildflowers and incredible natural and human history. First stop is to a chocolate factory in the heart of the Burren for a tour. Discover Irish chocolate crafted directly from sustainable cacao beans at the foothills of the Burren Mountains along the Wild Atlantic Way. Watch chocolatiers hand painting truffles, craft Irish milk chocolate, create vegan chocolate creations, and of course sample some award winning hot chocolate.With a sweet treat on board, its time to walk it off with a sheepdog demonstration and farm tour. While you watch the brilliant sheepdogs work the flock, chat to the local farmer about a life spent on the rugged west coast before exploring an ancient passage tomb.

Overnight: Clare | Gregans Castle Hotel
Room Type: Superior and Classic
Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 4 - Tuesday 18th June - The Aran Islands

It’s hard to resist the allure of one of the many islands that dot the Irish coastline and today you and your guide will take to the water and ferry to The Aran Islands. The history of these islands goes back millennia and today Gaelic is still the daily spoken language of the inhabitants. The Aran islands seem to defy their size by all they have to offer: breathtaking scenery, mediaeval castles, cliffs and prehistoric forts are all to be found on this little group of islands.

Set sail to the remote Inismór today and explore with the aid of some off road adventure vehicles. Padraig and Aonghus will bring you to all the off the beaten track spots on the islands that only their 4×4’s can reach. Learn of the Gaelic language spoken on the islands, the unique Irish culture and traditions of the local people, the flora and fauna that inhabit the islands and of course the filming site from the recent Banshees of Inisherin film! On the return, marvel at the sheer size and scope of The Cliffs of Moher with a vantage point most never get to see.

Ferry time to the islands is about 40 mins.

Overnight: Clare | Gregans Castle Hotel
Room Type: Superior and Classic
Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 5 - Wednesday 19th June - Surfing

Take advantage of the swell along The Wild Atlantic Way by catching some waves at Lahinch, or L.A as the local surfers call it. The beach itself is perfect for beginners while the surrounding coastline has countless points, slabs and reefs to suit all abilities. The small town has a great surfy vibe with plenty of shops and of course pubs where a creamy pint of Guinness awaits after a few hours in the water.

Overnight: Clare | Gregans castle Hotel
Room Type: Superior and Classic
Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 6 - Thursday 20th June - Clare to Kerry

Tracking further south, leaving Clare your destination is the little town of Kenmare in the County of Kerry and the stunning Sheen Falls Lodge.
Your have a couple of driving routes open to you with the car ferry bringing you across the mouth of the river Shannon or the road route bringing you through Adare, a little traditional village voted Ireland’s prettiest year on year. It is not hard to see why with it’s thatched roofed cottages, tea rooms, castle ruins and boutique shops.

Be sure to pick up some provisions and snacks ahead of your check into your two bedroomed cottage on the grounds of Sheen Falls this evening.


Overnight: Kenmare | Sheen Falls Lodge
Room Type: Little Hay Cottage

Day 7 - Friday 21st June - Onsite Sheen Falls

A break from the driving today with a day spent on site at Sheen Falls Lodge. This morning we have arranged a private Falconry Experience for you where you can get up close and personal with some magnificent birds of prey.
There is horse riding, horse and cart rides, fishing, and walking tours to name just a few activities all available on site and we are happy to add any more activities for you or simply relax , walk around Kenmare and see where the day takes you.

Overnight: Kenmare | Sheen Falls Lodge
Room Type: Little Hay Cottage
Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 8 - Saturday 22nd June - Exploring Killarney National Park

In the southwest of County Kerry is an expanse of rugged, mountainous country that sweeps down to the world-famous Lakes of Killarney. Here, stretching across 10,000 hectares, lies Killarney National Park, with its unforgettable combination of mountains, lakes, woodland and waterfalls.

Board a traditional wooden boat and tour the calm waters in this unique location, visiting a small deserted island on route. Back on land and be sure to visit the mediaeval tower house at Ross Castle, Muckross House and Farm and Torc Waterfall. Oh and keep an eye out for the resident herd of deer.

Overnight: Kenmare | Sheen Falls Lodge
Room Type: Little Hay Cottage
Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 9 - Sunday 23rd June - The Dingle Peninsula

The Dingle Peninsula is like an open air museum- richly filled with national monuments and historically important sites. There are a wealth of places of interest to be explored on the Dingle Peninsula from the Gallarus Oratory, a 1200 year old dry stone oratory in perfect condition with a glorious view to The Blasket Islands. The coastline on Slea Head drive alone is worth the visit for its stunning views of The Blasket Islands and beyond, visit the information centre there or perhaps a local pottery barn & studio. Dingle town is renowned for its cheery pubs, traditional Irish music, local artisans, and it’s fabulous seafood cuisine. A day well spent exploring on your own.

Overnight: Kenmare | Sheen Falls Lodge
Room Type: Little Hay Cottage
Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 10 - Monday 24th June - Kerry to Dublin

Leaving the west coast, it is time to head back to Dublin for your final few nights in Ireland. we have some suggested stops to break up the drive for you including the imposing Rock of Cashel. Featuring an impressive mediaeval castle atop a limestone outcrop, the site is known for its rich history and architectural beauty. The site’s origins date back to the 4th or 5th century, and it has served as a fortress, a royal residence, and a religious centre throughout its long history. The Rock of Cashel is a symbol of Ireland’s heritage and a testament to the country’s ancient past.

Once checked into your city hotel, spend the rest of today getting acquainted with Ireland’s capital city which is easily explored on foot. We have classic and quirky tours and experiences to recommend in Dublin including the iconic Guinness Storehouse Tour.

Overnight: Dublin | The Alex
Room Type: Classic King and Twin
Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 11 - Tuesday 25th June - Celtic Games

Dare to be a Celtic Warrior today! Take a journey of discovery deep into Irish culture, where our sports and language meet. From hurling, one of the oldest field sports in the world, to Gaelic football you will experience an enthralling energy packed introduction to our National Games that will literally take your breath away and leave you with memories to last a lifetime. Great fun for all the family.


Overnight: Dublin | The Alex
Room Type: Classic King and Twin
Meals Included: Breakfast

Day 12 - Wednesday 26th June - Depart

Today is departure day as you take the rental back to the airport and catch your flights home. We do hope your time in Ireland has been memorable and we once again have the opportunity to welcome to our shores.

Trip Details

Inclusions Read More
  • All accommodation from Day 1 to Day 12 on a bed and breakfast basis
  • All guided hikes and activities mentioned in the itinerary
    – Galway Food Tour
    – Archeologist in Innishbofin
    – Tour Chocolate Factory
    – Sheep dog Demo Experience
    – Aran Island Off roading incl Ferry
    – Private Surfing Lesson
    – Private Falconry Experience
    – Private Killarney Lakes Boat Experience
    – Private Irish Traditional Games Experience
  • Driving maps and route notes
  • Personalised trip design and delivery
  • 24 hour in-country support from the Wilderness Team
Exclusions Read More
  • Flights
  • Car Rental
  • Travel insurance
  • Meals not mentioned in the inclusions
  • Activities and entrance fees not mentioned in the inclusions
Pricing Read More

Pricing is based on for people sharing two rooms in Connemara, Clare and Dublin and with a private two bed cottage in Kenmare Kerry.

Terms & Conditions Read More

Please see our booking terms here.

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